our kids' favorite toys! (ages 5 + 3)

3:11 PM




My how the times have changed... I was looking back at my last "toy roundup" and it looked very different from this one. It's bittersweet though - although we don't have toddlers anymore who play with rattles and stuffies we have children who love to move their body, create and pretend. It's an exciting new frontier and I love watching them develop new skills and talents. 
I often get asked to share more about what toys our children like to play with. Some of you have noticed that it's more or less the same ones on a day to day basis. Sure they still get gifts from friends and family and they also earn a weekly allowance that they occasionally spend on a new toy but ultimately those are "flash-in-the-pan" type of toys that they get bored with pretty quickly. But the tried and true workhorses of their play are the ones you see above. This is what gets played with daily and has provided consistent pockets of independent play throughout the day. I'll talk about each one in some more detail below:
  • Wooden Story Natural Blocks - our kids have had these for close to two years now and out of everything in their room it's the one thing they still play with almost daily. I'll be honest with you, when I heard people talking about their kids happily playing with wooden blocks I was pretty skeptical. But once we started limiting screen time and being very selective of what they do watch they creativity really blossomed. Simply put - playtime is no longer a chore. 
  • Ikea toy cars - Teddy is a boy through and through. I can't begin to tell you how many cars, trucks and airplanes we have bought for him over the years. But these simple, well-made and trusty cars have remained a favorite to this day. And let's face it - you cannot beat that price point. 
  • Sarah's Silks Play Silks - this is a fairly new addition but one that was an instant hit! I'm learning more and more that it is more often the simplest toys that elicit the most joy and boundless creativity. They have built forts, made capes and dresses, used them to represent the ocean or sky and dozens of other uses. I can't recommend these enough! 
  • Stuffed animals - now let me explain. The only stuffed toys they still play with are ones that pass the "real test," meaning they have to look as close to the real thing. Often these are more expensive but they are good to have around as they come in handy for a lengthy pretend play session. 
  • Balance board - Birdie first tried this at our friends house and instantly fell in love with it. Every time we would come over she would beg to play with it. Because it's an investment piece I waited for months to see if the interest would fade but almost six months later it was still her favorite toy at her friend's house. I finally got one this spring and can't say enough good things. Once again, so simple, but the uses are endless. I also love that it's a toy that helps them move their body. 
  • Legos - this is another toy where I first saw an interest when they got to use it at a friend's house. I finally caved and got them their first real box of them months ago and let me tell you - the day we brought it home my two kids were silent for TWO FULL hours!! Like not one sound. It was glorious. Since then it has remained a daily favorite and a great way to channel their energy into a quiet activity. 
  • Ikea paper holder - this is probably what gets the most use around here daily. We have a big jar of crayons and colored pencils and at least once a day the kids will head to their "drawing table" and color yards of paper. I keep several rolls on hand at all times for when they run out and that way I don't have to dread a monthly Ikea trip. It's cheap, it's wonderful and it's something they really love. 
  • Bucket of dinosaurs - my parents gave this to Teddy for his third birthday and it was an instant favorite. I keep them in an open basket in their room and they love to create stories and scenarios with them. Lately they create these "lands" using the silks and it is pretty cool to watch. 

So there you have it! Our tried and true and very favorite toys! Let me know if this post was helpful and if you have any questions send them my way!

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